Diabetes-Friendly Side Dish Recipes

Find healthy, delicious side dish recipes for diabetes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Roasted Garlic-Parmesan Cabbage

Rating: 5 stars 1
Cabbage gets transformed in the oven with garlic, Parmesan and olive oil in this simple vegetable side. This irresistible side dish would make a welcome addition to any meal—try serving it alongside chicken or steak.
Portrait of Wendy Lopez
By Wendy Lopez

Peanut Butter Energy Balls

Rating: 3.5 stars 15
These healthy peanut butter and chocolate energy balls deliver a mixture of simple and complex carbohydrates to help fuel you up whenever you need a little boost.
By Lisa Valente

Oven-Fried Panko-&-Parmesan-Crusted Zucchini

Rating: 4 stars 2
These oven-fried panko- and Parmesan-crusted zucchini rounds are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, with a hint of Parmesan cheese in the crust. Dip them into marinara, pesto or ranch dressing for an irresistible snack or appetizer.
By Carolyn Casner

Roasted Honeynut Squash

Rating: 5 stars 6
Honeynut squash looks just like mini butternut squash, but on the inside you'll find an even sweeter, deeper orange flesh. This winter squash has only been available at farmers' markets and in select grocery stores for a few years. If you see it, grab a few to try! This simple roasting method enhances the natural flavor of the squash with butter and spices.
By Carolyn Casner

Sunomono (Japanese Cucumber Salad)

Rating: 4.5 stars 6
This version of sunomono uses more readily available English or slicing cucumbers, but if you live near an Asian market you could substitute Japanese cucumbers. Some recipes call for salting the cucumbers first, but we found that squeezing them in paper towels removed enough excess moisture without adding additional sodium. This Japanese-inspired salad is cool, crisp and simply delicious.
By Jessie Price

Crispy Smashed Balsamic-Parmesan Mushrooms

Rating: 5 stars 1
These crispy smashed mushrooms take up the flavors of sweet and tangy balsamic vinegar and savory Parmesan cheese. Making an X in each cap helps them smash evenly.
By Carolyn Casner

Balsamic-Roasted Mushrooms with Parmesan

Rating: 5 stars 1
These super-flavorful mushrooms get a hint of sweetness thanks to a splash of balsamic vinegar. Parmesan cheese added at the end lends a savory note. Enjoy them as an accompaniment to steak or on their own as a side dish.
By Carolyn Casner

Sheet-Pan Roasted Root Vegetables

Rating: 5 stars 11
One pan is all you need for a heaping pile of nutritious, tender and colorful roasted root vegetables. Whip up this recipe at the beginning of the week to use in easy, healthy dinners all week long.
By Sylvia Fountaine

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Onions

Rating: 5 stars 11
Fresh herbs, onion and sautéed bacon flavor this easy Brussels sprouts recipe. This savory dish is delicious in the fall and winter months, when Brussels sprouts are in season. If you can find them still attached to the stalk, don't be intimidated—buy them, as they're likely more fresh. Recipe adapted from The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Quick Cucumber Kimchi

Rating: 4 stars 9
This cucumber kimchi recipe gets its flavor from garlic, fish sauce and a hint of Korean chile powder. Make this side dish ahead of time to let the flavors absorb into the cucumbers.
By Jamie Purviance

Maple-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Rating: 5 stars 15
In this healthy side dish, sweet potatoes are tossed with maple syrup, butter and lemon juice and roasted until golden brown. The delicious glaze that forms transforms this simple dish into something sublime.
By Kathy Farrell-Kingsley

Zucchini & Mushroom Sauté

Rating: 4.5 stars 5
Serve this simple side dish with grilled turkey burgers. Other fresh herbs, like thyme or oregano, work well too.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen
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Inspiration and Ideas

23 Must-Have Side Dishes for a Diabetes-Friendly Holiday
These recipes keep carbohydrates in check, and they're lower in saturated fat and sodium, so they fit into a diabetes-friendly eating pattern.
18 Quick & Easy Diabetes-Friendly Holiday Side Dishes
Make a fast and flavorful side dish to accompany your holiday meal.
Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Panko
Rating: 5 stars 1

These roasted Brussels sprouts are finished with a crispy panko topping, and are the perfect veggie side dish for any weeknight meal. Serve alongside roasted chicken, fish or pork.